Evidence impact: Research showed unconditional cash transfers work. Now they're everywhere

Across the world, governments used cash transfers, including unconditional transfers, to shield vulnerable people from the economic hardships of the COVID-19 pandemic. As of December 2020, cash transfer schemes made up more than a third of the estimated 1400 social protection responses to the pandemic across 215 countries and territories.

A classification of interventions and outcomes for international development evidence

Ever had to scan a vast number of papers manually, just so you can find the evidence you need? Confused by the different terminologies used in a paper to talk about the same intervention? Annoyed that the abstract doesn’t mention all the outcomes?

New research on food systems and nutrition still neglects priority topics

Most new food systems research focuses on topics that previous research has already addressed, while only a handful of new studies break ground on under-studied priority subjects. This finding comes from newly-updated figures based on our first-ever living Evidence Gap Map on Food Systems and Nutrition,

Where next in the quest for better evidence — after this year's picks for the Nobel Prize in Economics

The buzz around this year’s Nobel Prize picks in economics continues to stimulate discussion, not least on “where next in the quest for better evidence?” The groundbreaking research by Laureates David Card, Joshua Angrist and Guido Imbens has substantially improved our ability to answer key causal questions with great benefits to society. But much more needs to be done to get from conceptual advances to improved practice in evidence-informed decision-making by policymakers and program designers around the globe.

Six major upgrades to the evidence architecture: making evidence easily available and accessible

Easy access to evidence does not equal use. But if we are to realise the potential of evidence to inform policy and change lives, access to reliable sources of evidence is a necessary condition.

Mapping evidence gaps on good governance and political competition

Political decisions for the common good and political accountability are important drivers of development and stability. These are enabled by good governance and political competition. Although an increasing body of evidence highlights the importance of institutions and good governance for development, the number of free countries, according to the Freedom House Barometer, has reached its lowest level in 15 years,

Evidence Impact: Taking HIV self-testing from pilot programs to global implementation

In March of this year, UNAIDS launched the In Your Hands HIV self-testing campaign in the Caribbean, aiming to increase the proportion of HIV-positive individuals who know their status. In January, Senegal's government approved its new HIV self-testing strategy, working with a donor-funded program to promote and distribute the HIV self-tests in West Africa. These efforts join others around the world, with a push from the World Health Organization for countries to fast-track HIV self-testing.

Making agricultural insurance work for smallholder farmers in the COVID era

Sustainable agriculture is crucial for the 2030 agenda for sustainable development. Agricultural production is inherently risky due to erratic climate conditions, crop loss from pests, and fluctuations in crop and/or input prices, limited access to inputs, among others. These

Beyond Counterfactuals: Making transparent, reproducible and ethical evidence (TREE) central to rigorous evidence generation

Since 3ie was established, we have known we need to learn from evidence to make better decisions and that we need to open the ‘black box’ of project design and implementation to learn what works, what doesn’t, and why. But as this movement for more evidence generation matured, we have increasingly understood that research that generates evidence also requires accountability and transparency.

Evidence impact: Putting the brakes on a childhood nutrition program with unintended consequences

Even bad news can be useful. In this case, as part of an upgrade of Colombia's childcare centres, a foundation called Fundación Éxito had planned to fund a new nutrition program for children. But it reversed course after an impact evaluation showed that the new nutrition component seemed to do more harm than good. Children's nutrition did not improve and some gained an excessive amount of weight.